T-bone car accidents occur when the front end of one vehicle strikes the side of the other vehicle. They’re among the deadliest types of collisions and most commonly occur at intersections. But who’s usually at fault in these situations? Is it the person whose vehicle was struck on the side? Or is it the person whose front end struck the other vehicle? Unfortunately, there’s no single answer to this question, and determining fault in these collisions can be a lot more complicated than you think. Keep reading to learn from a personal injury attorney in Lakewood Ranch, FL, how fault is determined in T-bone collisions.
Who Had the Right of Way?
The primary factor in determining who is at fault in these collisions is establishing which driver had the right of way. Most of these collisions occur at controlled intersections, where there are stop signs, stoplights, or yield signs to control the movement of traffic through the intersection. Collisions typically occur because one party didn’t properly yield the right of way when they should have.
So, the first step in determining fault in a T-bone collision is always to determine who had the right of way. This is most often done through witness statements and/or traffic camera footage. If one vehicle clearly disregarded the other driver’s right of way, that individual will be the one at fault in the accident. This typically means they didn’t fully stop at a stop sign, ran a stoplight, or failed to yield to oncoming traffic when required. The failure to follow these laws at the intersection means they’re liable for the damages to the other driver’s vehicle as well as any medical bills and other damages.
What about Uncontrolled Intersections?
Of course, not every T-bone collision is going to occur at a controlled intersection. They can also occur at points known as “uncontrolled” intersections. These are places where vehicles may be entering oncoming traffic without the guidance of traffic signs. Common examples include driveways and parking lots, where parked cars may be trying to pull out in front of vehicles already in motion.
However, even without traffic signs, there are still laws dictating who has the right of way in these situations—namely, the vehicle that is already on the roadway. Whether the vehicle is pulling out of a parking spot into the lanes in the parking lot or pulling out of a driveway and onto the street, the right of way should always be given to vehicles already in motion.
Causes of Failing to Yield
Determining fault also usually involves looking at the reasons why the driver failed to yield the right of way properly. The most common reasons are:
· Distracted driving (looking at their phone, talking to other passengers, etc.)
· Driving under the influence
· Drowsy driving
· Reckless or aggressive driving
Examining the accident to find the causes of the driver’s failure to yield the right of way is an essential part of building a personal injury case in these types of accidents. If the at-fault driver was engaging in behaviors that were reckless, irresponsible, and/or illegal, the case against them is much stronger.
Do You Need a Lawyer?
If you’ve been involved in a T-bone car accident, you should hire an attorney for personal injury in Lakewood Ranch, FL. Erjavec Injury Law can help you to build a case that proves who was at fault, and we can get you the compensation you deserve. Give us a call today to schedule a consultation.